COVID-19 vaccine leaders talk up the need for partners, potential for a working vax by October
Leaders from four of the biggest drugmakers in the world spoke about rising to the challenge of defeating the global pandemic as scaled-up trials and a potential approval peek over the horizon.
COVID-19 pharma vaccine executives took to the (virtual) stage of the International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers & Associations (IFPMA) event Thursday, speaking specifically on the “status of collaboration and risk-sharing to speed up the research, development and manufacturing of vaccines against COVID-19” as well as where we are in the vaccine timeline.
Speakers included AstraZeneca CEO Pascal Soriot, GlaxoSmithKline chief Emma Walmsley, Johnson & Johnson Chief Scientific Officer Paul Stoffels and Pfizer leader Albert Bourla. Each company is working internally and with partners to seek out a new inoculation to stop the pandemic in its tracks.
One of the biggest points made from the outset is the need for partners. No one company will create a vaccine for this pandemic on their own: GSK has teamed up with Sanofi, while AstraZeneca is backing the University of Oxford by being on the hook for millions of doses for its leading candidate. Pfizer has teamed up with German mRNA company BioNTech, and J&J recently pledged $1 billion in partnership with the U.S. Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority to develop its vaccine.
This is just a snapshot: There are more than 100 vaccines now in the works for COVID-19 (10 clinical, 115 preclinical), with Merck the most recent (and late to the party) with its Themis tie-up.
This might seem like overkill, but, as Merck ...
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